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'Criminal Minds' Season 10 Preview

Kathy Zerbib |
September 29, 2014 | 2:47 p.m. PDT

Senior Entertainment Editor

One Jennifer on "Criminal Minds" is enough, and it's not Jennifer Love Hewitt (Twitter/@SheWearsBowTies).
One Jennifer on "Criminal Minds" is enough, and it's not Jennifer Love Hewitt (Twitter/@SheWearsBowTies).

Let's face it, the "Criminal Minds" season nine finale was considerably underwhelming. To be fair, the action-packed season ended with the departure of a main character who, frankly, was never a fully embraced member of the BAU.

With season 10 set to premiere on Wednesday, here's a refresher of what to look forward to… And the rest we as fans must grudgingly accept as this season's reality.

Alex Blake's departure. Come on, this was not a total surprise. "Criminal Minds" regularly kills off or lets go of cast members. Even A.J. Cook and Paget Brewster got the ax and were reinstated on numerous occasions.But Blake, a Georgetown professor with a ruined reputation, had the qualities of a temporary agent from the start. She came to the BAU hoping to redeem herself from a failed case involving Erin Strauss years ago, but ultimately lacked confidence in the two seasons she starred. As welcoming as the agents were, she clearly stuck out. In "Blood Relations." her inefficiency as a solid agent showed when she struggled with an UnSub who got away and was able to kill again. She questioned her own abilities to Jennifer Jareau, needing her fellow agent's empty reassurance for comfort. Then, when Spencer Reid is shot in the finale, she becomes frantic and depressed. We find out she is having flashbacks of her 9-year-old son Ethan, who died of an unnamed neurological disease. This random update is used as Blake's breaking point and seems like a weak afterthought. Even Reid instantly accepts her resignation, as he calmly watches her leave in the final scene. It's an unhappy moment, but better her than anyone else.

READ MORE: 'Criminal Minds' Season 7 Premiere Recap: The Team Is Back Together At Last

Spencer Reid's injury. The last we saw of the darling doctor, he was still recovering from a bullet to the neck. Will he be sporting a neck brace for a while? Will he have miraculously healed by the premiere? Will his injury affect his prior drug habits or job performance in the field? We can't wait to find out.

Jennifer Love Hewitt - Gag! - joining the series. Notice anything odd about the season 10 promo video? Oh, it's Jennifer Love Hewitt's spunkiness clashing with the entire flow of the BAU. "'Criminal Minds' is back with all-new episodes… And a whole lot of love," says the narrator of the video in his shallow attempt to make a play on words. It is an extremely unsuccessful attempt. Only seconds before, the same narrator called the series "TV's number one suspense thriller." These two little soundbites do not click. Later, when Aaron Hotchner tells her, "I think you'll be a valuable asset," she responds with her best newsgirl anchor nod and says, "I am like a boy scout." What?! Is "Criminal Minds" spoofing itself? Has Jennifer already ruined season 10? The "Ghost Whisperer" actress is joining the BAU as Kate Callahan and hopefully her career as an agent will only last this one season. Her personality - whether intentional or not - makes a mockery of the other brilliant actors on the show.

Penelope Garcia's newfound cajones. After she stepped into action and saved Reid at the hospital, Garcia is consistently showing herself to be a better agent over the past few seasons. She's taken on more cases and spends less time behind-the-scenes. Sure, her skills are still shaky, but expect some more kickass moments from everyone's favorite hacker this time around.

READ MORE: Top 10 Best Dressed Characters This Fall TV Season

Aaron Hotchner's budding relationship with Beth Clemmons. She's no Haley, but she makes Hotch happy and she seems alright so far. Beth ran her way into Hotch's heart and is there to stay. She even met his son Jack, a serious step. What's next for the new couple? Maybe season 10 has an impromptu wedding in store… Just kidding.

Check out the promo video below. The new season premieres Wednesday, October 1 at 9/8c on CBS.

Reach Senior Entertainment Editor Kathy Zerbib here. Follow her on Twitter here.



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